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BUT
There were 6000 absolute by the book Lithgow-Made, gauged, inspected & approved complete original rifles.
Then there were the "large number" (I can't find a head count), of rifles that had been issued & for some reason were back at the factory, overhauled & awaiting distribution back to "Stores" & eventually to the Military Districts & then on to the regiments as requested or needed.
Then there were the ones that Needed a "full to like new" "FTR" rifles. These were restored by the factory to 85% "Like New" condition. They are stamped "FTR" & so easy to tell.
To put it into perspective tens of thousands of SMLE's, maybe more, have been FTR'd worldwide. Almost nobody looks down on them.
Plonker where did these numbers come from? Is this the number of rifles jovino purchased?
 

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Plonker where did these numbers come from? Is this the number of rifles jovino purchased?
Supposedly.
These are things I'm finding while actually researching what I may, or may not have.
It comes from several sources, including some ex Lithgow workers memories. & several other sources.
Please understand I'm not looking to start a confrontation, just clear up the multiple different versions of what actually happened.
Its a mess.
 

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There is a chart showing the prefix letter by year for the completed rifles with ser.# ranges Mine is an E for 1944 by ser.#...







Not to worried I'll probably never shoot it.
 
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Why are there any mint 1941 Lithgows?.......When conscripts were training with limbs cut from trees in March 1942. ........and had never fired a 303 ,nor had a rifle issued to them until they landed in Port Moresby?......I suspect the new guns were in a reserve to guard a political elite in Melbourne as they loaded all their valuables on ship to flee to the USA.
 

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Supposedly.
These are things I'm finding while actually researching what I may, or may not have.
It comes from several sources, including some ex Lithgow workers memories. & several other sources.
Please understand I'm not looking to start a confrontation, just clear up the multiple different versions of what actually happened.
Its a mess.
No of course mate, I don’t want any conflict, just interested in the numbers here.
Sounds like your smashing out the research to try and establish what you have and that’s good, but just be careful you don’t become a purist in the process.
Seriously though, I think you have to be a bit careful of how you interpret the information, because there’s often little depth of detail behind a single point or characteristic of a rifle that you may be reading about. You end up with a casserole of information that doesn’t mean much and looks like slop. For example, when you talk about black finishes on a Lithgow or an Australian service SMLE, what’s the detail? Yes it happened, but what sort of black finish………blued, parked, painted? What period of time did it occur? What level was it done…….the small arms factory, the orange annex, or lower level ordinance workshops? What’s the rest of the gun? Every rifle on its merit. Maybe none of these finishes apply to yours and probably don’t from what I can see from a distance. Are parts serial numbered and if not why? There’s periods of time in Australia where some parts weren’t numbered on new and refurbed rifles, but what’s the rest of the gun? Does it fit in with what we understand through our research about those rifles that do have unnumbered parts…….how it’s marked etc? Collectors (who are a total PITA) who may have been privileged enough to collect a large volume of rifles, if they are so inclined can develop a good depth of knowledge by studying real examples and noting consistencies and patterns. This combined with books, particularly from our leading and foremost authority in the field as well as the official records and real accounts from the old blokes who were there, is the ideal mix of information, But even then there’ll be shit we won’t fully understand and opinions will differ.
Not having a dig here and I suspect your not going to be hung up over whatever the outcome of the gun. It is what it is and because your not a purist or a collector (those total PITA again) it won’t matter will it, you only want a smart looking shooter.
 

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Discussion Starter · #47 ·
Why are there any mint 1941 Lithgows?.......When conscripts were training with limbs cut from trees in March 1942. ........and had never fired a 303 ,nor had a rifle issued to them until they landed in Port Moresby?......I suspect the new guns were in a reserve to guard a political elite in Melbourne as they loaded all their valuables on ship to flee to the USA.
I am sure they exist but have to be as rare as WWII Japanese Conscientious objectors.
 

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Discussion Starter · #48 ·
In removing the bolt & looking toward to the front of the sear you can see the copper blocks on either side of the sear......hopefully as in the photo,if that’s what you’re asking.
Cheer’s.
I looked and could not see any copper but I saw green as if copper oxidized. Sun was on its way down so could not capture it on film. Will try in the morning.
 

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From 1940- March 1942 some 92,638 rifles had been produced and 34,340 had been converted, table 9-17. The requirement for 7Divisions & 3 Corps was 124,378 rifles, Table 9-20, pg. 280.
By June 1942 the figures were 118,598 & 34,340. Table 9-17, pg. 278.
From Dr A T Ross' book "Armed and Ready, the industrial development and defence of Australia, 1900- 1945", Turton & Armstrong, Sydney.
Should be a must read book for anyone discussing the topic.
 

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Why are there any mint 1941 Lithgows?.......When conscripts were training with limbs cut from trees in March 1942. ........and had never fired a 303 ,nor had a rifle issued to them until they landed in Port Moresby?......I suspect the new guns were in a reserve to guard a political elite in Melbourne as they loaded all their valuables on ship to flee to the USA.
I never said nor even suggested there were .
I have admitted form the beginning that mine was refinished & restocked.in '44 or 45, Just as the seler descried it originally
I simply repeated what I was told by people who were there back when
 

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Discussion Starter · #51 ·
Plonker, you sold that one in the WTS forum right? I think I messaged you about it after buying this one. I bought mine for what you sold yours for. They command a pretty good price parts gun or not.
 

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OMG this is getting silly. Another point any of you ever fought with the Digger's ? I have and they are a right bunch and some of the greatest thieves in any military organization.

They came with two 3/4 ton 4X4's and almost left with three and two of my M60's.
 

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Going back to Post #1 ...
I can see the receiver PAA number in photo 4 and the bolt PAA number under the bolt handle in photo 5 but can't see if they match.
These numbers were stamped by the armourer who originally matched and fitted the bolt to the receiver, so if they match (and were not bodgied by JJCo) then you at least have a properly fitted bolt. I suspect yours was originally a barrelled receiver (which is great), to which were then added the requisite parts.
As long as the receiver is well fitted to the wood (the so-called draws) you should end up with a good shooter. The fitting of the wood is both a science and a Dark Art, and the subject of many Enfield textbook chapters.
 

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Discussion Starter · #54 ·
Your bottom pic shows the PAA number, there should be a matching number on the underside of the bolt handle (they pretty much touch each other with the bolt closed).
HOUSTON, WE HAVE A MATCH! yes they match.
 

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Discussion Starter · #55 · (Edited)
Going back to Post #1 ...
I can see the receiver PAA number in photo 4 and the bolt PAA number under the bolt handle in photo 5 but can't see if they match.
These numbers were stamped by the armourer who originally matched and fitted the bolt to the receiver, so if they match (and were not bodgied by JJCo) then you at least have a properly fitted bolt. I suspect yours was originally a barrelled receiver (which is great), to which were then added the requisite parts.
As long as the receiver is well fitted to the wood (the so-called draws) you should end up with a good shooter. The fitting of the wood is both a science and a Dark Art, and the subject of many Enfield textbook chapters.
They DO! I just checked. And yes the wood to metal fit is pretty good too I have no complaints.
 

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Im not disagreeing....I have owned mint 1941 and 1942 Lithgows.....the question is why wernt they issued when the need was desperate.?.....there is a poem from those days by C.S.Manifold.......a line goes "Muddle thick as treachery"
 

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Plonker, you sold that one in the WTS forum right? I think I messaged you about it after buying this one. I bought mine for what you sold yours for. They command a pretty good price parts gun or not.
Not me, I've never sold an SMLE on here? I just checked messages too & I don't see anything from you. I think you may be confusing me with "The Danish Man" maybe?
 

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I found this! But cannot make out what is stamped.


View attachment 3975324
"HV" (high Velocity, sighted for the "New:" Mk7 round)
"SC" (Short or Small Cone throat difference for the MkVII round).
^^^EDITED^^^
I have similar markings, but that seems to have a "JJ&CO" over-stamped on them sideways which mine dont.
I have 4 rows of charecters:
L
HV
SC
MA 41
further forward on the sight base right next to the pivot is a really tiny repitition of the (matching) serial number of the action bolt & barrel
Hood Automotive tire Motor vehicle Bicycle part Bumper

Can you please do me a favor?
a pic of the bottom metal showing the area by the main screw.
Mine is witness marked & staked, this indicates a lot more care than a "reassembled bucket gun" & I'm curious if its "normal" or unique.
Thanks.
 

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JJCO was most often stamped in very small letters on the flat of the charger bridge where the bridge is attached to the right side of the receiver.
Mine has something stamped there, but its impossible to actually read what it says even with a 10X apochromatic jewelers loupe (very sharp & high end) & even glancing lighting & digital manipulation don't help much! I'm gong to take pics this afternoon, maybe that will reveal something.
I honestly won't be too concerned if it says JJ&CO, because that just the IMPORTER. it doesn't say anything about the condition of the rifle & I kind of assume its one anyway.
 

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OMG this is getting silly. Another point any of you ever fought with the Digger's ? I have and they are a right bunch and some of the greatest thieves in any military organization.

They came with two 3/4 ton 4X4's and almost left with three and two of my M60's.
You say that like its a bad thing?
I had & still have several Aussie mates & even shared a house with one of them for a while.
I do have a question regarding your minty Lithy.
Like mine & 1918 Militaria's it doesn't have the "Billboard" stamps common on many Aussie issued guns. (NOT the Slaz & so on makers marks or the brass discs, the unit & MD & so on ones.) do you have any idea where & when these would be applied?
Anyone else feel free to chip in with any info you have.
Like these:
Musical instrument Wood Musical instrument accessory Font Tints and shades
 
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